[New ways in hepatocyte cultures: cell immobilisation technique] [Article in German]

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Marc Wick
Hans-Günther Koebe
Friedrich W. Schildberg


Hepatocyte cultures are used for a variety of investigations in the field of toxicology, pharmacology or hepatology. Above all rodent hepatocytes are used for these experiments. But many results from animal hepatocytes do not correspond to human metabolism. Therefore in vitro studies on human hepatocytes would be extremely useful to reduce animal experiments. One of the major obstacles to the ultimate success of approaches in the past was the inability of standard culture conditions to maintain hepatocyte viability and differentiated function over long term periods under standardised conditions. The technique of cell immobilisation mimicks thein vivo architecture of the liverin vitro. This culture technique does not only support liver specific functions over a period of 50 days but it also preserves hepatocyte morphology. We conclude that the immobilisation technique is of considerable advantage as compared to other cell culture systems, especially in order to reduce animal experiments. Another advantage of cell immobilisation is the possibility of cryoconservation for repeated investigations on batch-controlled hepatocyte cultures. In combination with new techniques of cell isolation, it is also possible to culture porcine hepatocytes from slaughterhouse organs. This could also reduce animal experiments.

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How to Cite
Wick, M., Koebe, H.-G. and Schildberg, F. W. (1997) “[New ways in hepatocyte cultures: cell immobilisation technique] [Article in German]”, ALTEX - Alternatives to animal experimentation, 14(2), pp. 51-56. Available at: https://www.altex.org/index.php/altex/article/view/1598 (Accessed: 16January2021).